Tanzania: Geita Gold Extends Mine Plan to Seven Years

TANZANIA has granted a new licence to Geita Gold Mining Limited (GGML) for underground and open-pit mining activities after the first mine reached the end of its economic life.

The new licence for Nyamulilima warrants the starting implementing the 2021 Mining Plan which will operate for underground and open-pit mining after the open-pit mining at Nyankanga reached the end of its economic life last year. GGML's Mining Plan for the Nyamulilima project comprises Ridge 8, Star and Comet, Xanadu, Selous, Mabe and Roberts targets.

Open pit mining at Nyamulilima is expected to exponentially increase gold production at GGML, with a mine plan extension until 2027. Government's Chief Inspector of Mines, Dr Abdul Rahman Mwanga said the approval was based on the scrutiny of documents provided by the company to the Mining Commission.

"Following the approval, GGML is expected to conduct mining operations as described in the evaluated application package approved by the Chief Inspector of Mines on behalf of the government," Mr Mwanga said recently. GGML required conducting its business in compliance with the terms and conditions of the Tanzania laws and regulations.

The largest miner in the country will also update the approved Mining Plan annually and in occurrence of major changes in the operations. GGML's Managing Director Richard Jordinson commended the government for the collaboration over the years, saying now they have the opportunity to maximize the mine's potential and meet stakeholder expectations.

"The approval of our Mining Plan is testament to our solid mining record in the country. It also illustrates the government's confidence in our company as development partners. "The green light to commence mining activities at Nyamulilima is great news for our stakeholders, employees and contractors. It also augurs well for the Geita community," Mr Jordinson said.

The operation, according to the GGML, will be guided by the mine core value to ensure that communities surrounding the mine are better off for AngloGold Ashanti having been there. "... We anticipate continued investment in the community," added Mr Jordinson.

GGML, according to its website, for the last ten years has invested back some 25 million US dollars (about 60bn/-) to the surrounding community. And, for the next a decade and half committed to plough back to the community some 53 million US dollars (over 120bn/-).

The mine data showed that 76 per cent of total procurement in 2018 was spent locally within Tanzania. The mine procured services such as civil, building and construction, parts and services, food and catering, transport, accommodation, medication, IT and human resources services.

The local supplier network, thus, increased to 305 local business owners. Geita produced 604,000oz in 2019, the highest level in 14 years, compared to 564,000oz in 2018.

"The operation is successfully transitioning to predominantly underground operations, with a 10per cent increase in recovered grades achieved on the back of additional flexibility in the blending strategy resulting in improved recovery rates," GGML website said.

Geita, one of AngloGold Ashanti's flagship mines, has been in operation as a large-scale mine since the 1930s. The Geita gold deposit is mined as a multiple open-pit and underground operation (since 2016) and will continue to operate as such until the entire economic open-pit mineral resource is exhausted.

The mine is currently serviced by a carbon-in-leach processing plant with an annual capacity of 5.1metric tonnes. In 2018, the mineral resource was 6.26 million ounces.

Recently GGML emerged the overall best performing company in the mining sector in Tanzania during the 2019/2020 financial year after scooping accolades in Corporate Social Responsibility, Environment and Safety, Government Revenue Collection (Taxes) and Local Business Content.

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